A powerful family drama about autism. The A Word is a new, thought-provoking series starring Christopher Eccleston, Lee Ingleby, Morven Christie, Greg McHugh, Vinette Robinson and the very talented six-year-old, Max Vento. This is the story of the Hughes family, who work and love and fight like every other family.
Set in the idyllic landscape of the Lake District, Paul and Alison Hughes are building a life for themselves and their two children: teenage daughter Rebecca (from Alison’s first marriage) and five-year-old son Joe. Until the week he starts school, Joe is considered eccentric, maybe a little anti-social, maybe a little behind on the developmental checklists and at worse, a little odd. But when Alison’s brother Eddie and his wife Nicola return to the family home to rebuild their broken marriage, we find the first people brave or tactless enough to suggest that Joe’s problems run deeper. Then their youngest son is diagnosed with autism and they don’t feel like every other family anymore.
They realise that if their son is ever going to communicate, they are going to have to learn how to communicate themselves. In the weeks following his diagnosis, Joe’s character and Joe’s autism magnify and exaggerate the tensions and fault lines that run throughout this multigenerational family as they struggle to adapt to the changes in their lives and, more importantly, to learn to communicate.